by Rachel Cain
Dr. Jim Newheiser’s expertise is taking a worldly problem and paring it down to its biblical definition and solution. In the Lord’s wisdom, he has orchestrated a pattern to moneymaking and wealth management. He designed work as something good, present before the fall in Genesis 3. God intended for wealth to be accumulated slowly, over time, in conjunction with hard work and skill.
While many financial books will offer a complex strategy to take control of one’s money, “Money: Seeking God’s Wisdom” considers the origin of the problem; the heart. This is by no means an exhaustive textbook on wealth management, debt repayment, or budgeting strategies. Instead, it’s an opportunity to pause, take inventory of one’s relationship to money, and commit one’s plans to the Lord. As with all problems, financial troubles have a spiritual element to them. Of course, there are strategies and plans that can increase a person’s wealth. But, as Solomon knew well, it would all be for naught without a righteous heart before the Lord. The race for “enough” never satisfies. Money is a cruel god. Dr. Newheiser entreats his readers to seek the Lord and his wisdom above all else. Not only will this satisfy, but it will also give rise to contentment, generosity, and thankfulness.
Dr. Newheiser is not naïve to the fact that people come into financial trouble for a number of reasons. He writes, “no matter how wisely you act, you cannot always protect yourself from economic hardship” (p21). Some people are victims of a fallen world with fallen systems, full of injustice and trouble. Others are simply victims of their own choices. I found this book to be a hopeful starting point to offer those facing financial difficulty, regardless of the cause. Dr. Newheiser graciously guides his readers in the right steps and motivations for money management. He offers suggested resources at the close of this devotional citing a number of strategically-based books for seeking financial help. Those might be a worthy second step after considering the heart of the problem. This work would be a helpful and significant starting point for counseling those struggling to control their finances.